Recently I’ve been posting a bit on social media about race issues. I’ve been talking about white privilege and unconscious bias and the need for us all to dismantle the oppressor within.
I’ve been doing this after years of not speaking about race. For ten years I spoke about race every single day and then I just stopped.
I dived deeply into spirituality and the Divine Feminine and talking about living and working in alignment. I’ve now been talking about that for 9 years and things are changing again.
I’m being pulled in another direction. Everything is coming full circle. I’m being called to bring these two things together; social justice, and spiritual and personal development.
This hasn’t come out of the blue. I’ve actually been wondering about this for many years. I’ve been wondering how my background in social justice and advocacy and the protection of Aboriginal culture and heritage was connected to my work as a yoga teacher and then a business alignment mentor. I had no idea how to integrate these two very separate parts of me.
It was the topic of visibility that showed me that path.
The more I uncovered and cleared out my visibility blocks, the more that all parts of me were able to shine. Until I did that work, I had shut down parts of myself that ‘didn’t fit’. I just couldn’t see how they related to one another and so I ignored them.
Perhaps you’ve done the same thing in your own business or life?
Now I see that everything is unfolding perfectly.
I stopped speaking about race 9 years ago because I couldn’t contribute to that conversation any more until I had shifted as a person. (Until I’d done the personal transformation work that allowed me to see and understand things differently.) And I can’t speak anymore about spiritual and personal development without combining it with social justice. (There’s only so far I’ve been able to travel along this path before my knowledge of systemic inequality and the harm it causes has influenced the way I act, speak and work as a spiritual woman.)
So that’s where I am now. In the heart of that intersection.
Exploring how to dismantle inequality from the inside out.
Exploring what it means to be oppressed and to be an oppressor. (A state of being that’s inevitable in the world in which we live.)
This is probably the most controversial part of my work at this time. In the 12 or so years that I’ve been teaching about the chakras, the one people push back on the most is the solar plexus chakra. When I speak about victims and bullies, they’re very willing to see the victim within. They know all about her. They’re comfortable identifying with her. But when I ask them to look at the bully within, they push back. They don’t or won’t see her. They can’t stand the thought of being seen in that way.
The fear of being seen as anything less than nice, kind, polite, considerate, compassionate, thoughtful, generous is too much for many. Perhaps it’s not all of those traits, but you get the idea. People think of themselves as good people, and they are of course, but they really push back when you suggest that there might be more to them than just their goodness.
It’s a defence mechanism. It’s a way of maintaining an image. The good girl image. The good girl isn’t an oppressor. She’s a participant. She’s not the leader. She’s just following along. She’s supportive. She isn’t disruptive.
But here’s the thing; I don’t want you to be a good girl. I want you to lead. I know you’re a leader. I know you’re here to make waves. To speak up. To be heard. To spread your message.
But you can’t do that while the good girl is in place. You can’t do that when you’re so attached to maintaining the image of the good girl that you refuse to even see that you might have power over others. That you might already have influence over them.
You can’t have it both ways.
Either you’re a powerful, visible woman who’s taking back her power from those who would co-opt it in order to maintain the status quo, or you’re a victim. A good girl. An invisible cog in the wheel of a system that isn’t stacked in your favour and is designed to keep you playing small. Forever.
Often when I’m working with people around finding their message – the one that only they can share with the world – I ask them this question; what must be spoken?
For me, this is what must be spoken at this time. I cannot turn from this and I will not suppress parts of myself to be more palatable to people who don’t want to hear what I have to say. The time for compliance and dumbing down and swallowing words is over.
Now is the time for plain speaking. For compassionate action. For speaking deep and painful truths.
That is how we heal wounds. That is how we free ourselves from the shackles of systemic inequality. That is how we realise our deepest desire for liberation.